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tv   Dateline NBC  NBC  April 22, 2013 2:00am-3:00am PDT

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>> it was historic that moment, a man with prosthetic legs racing against the best in the world. never happened before. oscar pistorius made history and won hearts. he was huge, rivaling mandela, a red carpet star, virtually royalty as radio personality told us. >> he could do anything he wanted. he was already dining with royalty and world leaders. wherever he wanted to go in the world, he did. >> catnip for shows worldwide. and most of all, he told nbc last june he wanted to do it all right and keep it that way, especially four the people that helped him get to the top.
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>> i really don't want to miss up the last six years that i've put together. they've been not only my sacrifices. but a lot of people have invested time and money into me. and it wouldn't be fair on anyone if i lived a reckless lifestyle. >> money poured in, of course, lots of it. plenty of endorsement deals. a new crowd came on, wanna-bes. like kenny nay nay. he calls himself sushi king, entertainment czar. sushi king? this commercial nails his personality pretty well. >> i'm kenny, and my life is pretty good. >> and by the way, kenny did time in prison. >> i was a gangster.
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>> people don't usually say that. >> look, if you're out of it, it's easy to say that. >> kenny loved oscar. loved showing him off to a whole new cast of characters, not all of whom had oscar's best interests at heart. >> is that world at all dangerous for a newby to become involved? are there sharks? >> yes, there are sharks. >> and oscar loved swimming with them, it seems. still sweet, and still the sort of guy who would introduce himself to a kid down the street, brendan. >> what was he like? >> very nice personality, outgoing, talking about god. >> really? a spiritual guy? >> yes. very. >> of course, even a saint's head could be turned by all that attention. and oscar never claimed to be a
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saint. >> journalist michael sock love spent time with him. le he got a good look at the private and public side. >> i think oscar liked being oscar. he liked the money. he liked the fame. >> so, humble, sincere, sure. but also -- >> the man of danger, the man of expensive toys. >> and mary discovered how much he loved danger, the rush of living on the edge. >> in reckless ways. he needed speed. he could create it with his own prosthetics. and he wanted it to be a big part of his life. >> oscar's pastimes had everything to do with speed. the dirt bikes, the car, the speedboat. >> oscar had a very close call, driving that speedboat back in 2009, when he slammed it into a
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pier. >> i broke a couple bones in my face and i had just over 170 stitches in my face and they had to reconstruct my face. that made me look at my life and made my look at what risks i was taking. >> so he said, but he continued to race around town and local speedways he and his rich new friends rented for the purpose in fast cars. speed, daring, danger. oscar seemed to have an insashable need to prove himself. >> he had vulnerabilities that he must live with all the tile. whether he could dismiss them or get over them, the fact is, that's who he was. >> oscar liked guns, too. owned a 9 millimeter pistol. he was like a lot of south
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africans was worried about his own personal safety. guns and high security are part of the culture. but he seemed to love the image of wielding a weapon, posted this picture on twitter. he was even featured in a nike ad. i am the bullet in the chamber. >> he wanted to be a guy's guy and show that he could have everything he wanted. >> as 2012, the best year in young oscar's life was coming to an end, he landed one more prize, the gorgeous and talented reeva steenkamp. two beautiful people. coming up. who was this woman who'd captured so many hearts? >> she was outspoken. she wasn't a shy little girl. she gave her opinion, and she had one. septic system breakdowns affect over 1 million homes a year...
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when south africans woke up on valentine's day to the news that their oscar was charged with murder, it was for man owe a double shock. true, oscar pistorius was a hugely famous man, but will this country, at least, so was the
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victim. every new blonde on oscar's arm got attention, but this one in november of 2012 was already famous. the stunning model named reeva steenkamp. >> hi, i'm oscar's date. he needed a date at the last minute. he said throw swrur stuff together and come and be my date. >> she was magnetic. you were just drawn to her. i was drawn to her. >> her long time friend. >> there's no other reeva, that's for sure. not in this lifetime. >> our reeva steenkamp may say more about her intel jenls and her drive than about her beauty. >> she was the type of person who did reach for the stars and landed amongst them. that's for sure. >> it's a theme we heard again and again as we talked to reeva's friends and family. she had always pushed herself to
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succeed. from the time she was a girl growing up in port elizabeth. >> she was always keen, keen to go ahead. >> her uncle mike remembers her as a spirited young girl riding horses to the limit. >> she was doing a bit of jumping. the horse shied away from something. he reared back, and she fell backwards and fell onto her back and her neck. and that's how she broke it. >> a broken back that took months to heal. but reeva was determined to walk out of the hospital on her own. >> she always was mindful of the horse but how fast you get back on it. >> soon she was out of physical rehab and in front of the cameras. >> you guys are going to absolutely love it. >> an aspiring model dead set on making it in the big city. and she found an ally in the magazine editor. >> she was entering these model
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competitions and the face of the future or whatever. >> at first, she didn't make it, said engler, wasn't chosen. >> and she stuck with it. oh, well, i tried. she really. >> she wanted it. >> she did. and that's real ambition. >> with help from angler, reeva landed a cover on a men's magazine. she needed a new pub liisist and hired this man. >> she was happy. she was a happy soul. >> happy and smart. very smart. >> she was outspoken, you know. >> she wasn't a shy little girl. she gave her opinion. and she had one. >> earned it. in fact, during her modeling years, reeva put herself through college, got a law degree, the
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career pour after. >> part of her dream was to become one of, was to become an actress. >> two reevas, the gorgeous bikini model who displayed herself to the world and the surprisingly modest 29 year old who lived with her friend gina's family in one very modest bedroom and talked about wanting to use her growing celebrity to make a difference. >> she wanted to do something to help people and to get word out there, to have a voice. and she was going to do that this year. this was a very big year for her. >> why use her voice? she was determined to help end violence against women. as friends gina and darin told us, it was a subject she knew first hand. >> she had spoken about having a previous le abusive relationship. >> she would never stand for anything like that again. she was, if she said something once, you could bet your bottom
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dollar on it, that that was always how it was going to be. >> didn't look like that would be an issue, though, when she settled into a long term relationship with this guy, warren. the one her friends called the nice guy in her life. >> how long did you go out together? >> it was four and a half years. >> it was sometimes tough, said warren, to watch so many males buzzing around his girlfriend. but he was proud of her too. by summer of 2012, said warren, reeva had grown away from him. and when she told him good-bye, he accepted it. >> wasn't a bad break up, but probably a hard breakup. >> yeah. what break up isn't? >> reeva and francois were a big item. it's also when she hit a career
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jackpot, a coveted spot as one of the celebrity contestants on a reality show set in jamaica. >> my name is reeva and i am a model. and we are in jamaica this year. you can be jealous. >> it's not nothing that she was named one of the 100 sexiest women in the world. and here she was with south africa's sexiest celebrity. >> they look the incredibly lovey-dovey. >> oscar's frinld said she knew what was going on. he was proud of taking her to events, of showing her to the world. to south africa, to his friends. >> let's see what's behind door number one. >> meanwhile, reeva kept shooting the reality show, scheduled to air mid february. even as she maintained her
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campaign against violence against women. here she is, smiling through the gate at oscar's estate, on her way to her death. coming up. >> said do you have a daughter. and i said yes. and he said is it reeva? what had happened in the house that night? a horrible accident or something else? >> they say they have a witness who said she heard an
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it wasn't supposed to work out that way. oscar pistorius and reeva steenkamp had made plans to spend valentine's eve apart. they changed their minds. reeva decided to stay over. the sliding door to the balcony was open to let in the breeze. there were ladders in the yard, but oscar's guard dogs were there too. what happened here between the hours of midnight and 3:00 is the mystery. but we do know some things. sometime after 3:00 os cash walked into his bathroom and fired shots from his 9
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millimeter pistol into the toilet. oscar knocked down the door with his cricket bat. by the time he picked up reeva and carried her down the stairs, it was too late. reeva died in his arms. her mother got a call that morning. the man on the other end was from the police. yes. >> said do you have a daughter. i said yes. and he said reeva. i said yes. he said there's been an accident. and she's been shot. and i said all i want to know now if she's alive or if she's dead. >> an accident? south africa's beloved blade runner was arrested, subjected to a humiliating perp walk.
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oscar pistorius was facing life in prison and a prosecution that seemed very, very confident. spokesman -- do you think it is a winnable case? >> it is a winnable case. >> oscar's fame wouldn't win him any favors in court. >> in south africa, whether you're an icon, you'll be treated like anyone. >> how could a nation believe its hero had intentionally killed his girlfriend? he must have thought it was an intruder, which is exactly what oscar said. within days after his arrest, oscar appeared at a bail hearing. the first chance for the world to hear the state's story and his. time for a magistrate to decide whether oscar should remain in prison awaiting trial or wait at home on bail. >> this is a very conflicted
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narrative. >> karen is a crime reporter on south african tv. >> you want to believe him. you really, really, really want to believe him. >> here's oscar's version from a sworn statement read in court. he had gone to the balcony to get a fan, when he heard someone in the bathroom. startled he grabbed a pistol from underneath the bed. he felt especially vulnerable because he was not wearing his of legs. he screamed at the intruder to get out. he passed down the hall to the bathroom and opened fire. all the while, he insisted he was sure reeva was still in bed. here in the prisoner's dock, oscar looked every inch the tragic figure, literally trembling while friends and family and journalists crowded around him and the prosecution prepared to pounce. >> the magistrate looked at him, and he said you need to calm
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down, mr. pistorius. it's okay. you just need to calm down. >> prosecutors challenged oscar's valentine's day story and said it wasn't believable. why? for one thing he must have known reeva wasn't in the bed. he had to reach under the bed to get his gun. and if he screamed to say there was an intruder wouldn't reeva say she was in the bathroom. and oscar's claim that he hobbled to the bathroom without putting on his legs had to be a lie, because the trajectory of the bullets was downward. that detective also said he found testosterone no the house and cell phones in the bathroom as if reeva had been texting or calling someone for help. and perhaps most damming of all, he spoke to oscar's neighbors who heard what sounded like a woman screaming before the shots
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were fired. >> there was some kind of altercation. the police are saying they have a witness, a female neighbor who says she heard an argument between a male and a female an hour before. >> and it was well-established, said the state, that oscar displayed a tendency for aggression and violent outbursts. >> claimed it was nothing new for him. early on valentine's morning a young man with an anger problem blew up, shot reeva in cold blood and now was lying about it. >> and if he is to be believed, he just opened fire on a tiny little confined space where you couldn't move. that certainly sounds leak murder. >> outside the courthouse, it appeared many had rushed to a judgment. no, they chanted, oscar should not get bail even a state minister appeared to argue oscar deserved life in prison. but even as they chanted, a
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shock was in store. the case against oscar was about to improceed. courtesy of the very chief detective who made the case against him. >> coming up. oscar pistorius in private. >> he was clearly more vulnerable than most men. you're in bed. you don't have your legs. >> was he afraid for his life? >> he seemed to be on a hair trigger. every year we pick a new city to explore. but thanks to hotwire, this year we got to take an extra trip. because they get us ridiculously low prices on really nice hotels and car rentals. so we hit boston in the spring-- even caught a game. and with the money we saved, we took a trip to san francisco. you see, hotwire checks the competitions' rates every day so they can guarantee their low prices. so, where to next? how about there? ♪ h-o-t-w-i-r-e... ♪ our go sleeveless deodorant for five days.
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this is the main courthouse in south africa's sap tal,
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pretoria. the barely contained courthouse outside is weirdly reminiscent of o.j., with a distinctly african twist. and inside the packed courtroom, an epic meltdown, fallen hero oscar pistorius. >> he broke down completely. he was overcome, sobbing, struggling to breathe. he was inches away from me. >> was he really the bereaved boyfriend, or were these the crocodile tears of a murderer? >> i don't think i've ever witnessed it before, ever in my ten years of covering crime. such obvious signs of distress. >> and they seemed to be absolutely genuine as far as you could tell. >> it did seem to be ingenuine. how it was otherwise remains to be seen. he's fighting for his career and the rest of his life. >> and it looked like he was losing, until, while spectators
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looked on in astonishment one of the nation's chief lawyers went on. the testosterone was a harmless herbal supplement. the trajectory showing that he was wearing his legs when he fired? that was so far nothing more than his guess. and the neighbor who claimed to hear screaming by gunfire? first the detective said the witness was 600 meters away, maybe it was 300 and he really wasn't sure. >> it looked stupid. it looked really, really stupid. >> how stupid? he said he walked all over the crime scene and didn't notice a bullet that was later recovered in the bathroom. >> he was eaten alive. and whichever way you slice that cake, it was massively embarrassing.
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>> the detective had to admit reeva might simply have gone to the bathroom in the middle of the night. tests showed her blaerd was empty. whose car hearing a noise thought it was an intruder. he could find no inconsistencies with oscar's version. he to be constantly afraid for his own safety. was he really afraid? in fact we discovered plenty of evidence that he was. >> he felt like he needed to be able to protect him sechlt he was clearly more vulnerable than most men. you're in bid. you don't have your legs. >> security is a way of life in much of south africa. a visitor's attention is drawn immediately to miles and miles of thick, high walls, the razor wire that surrounds homes every are with. oscar was especially careful. bought his house in ha guarded and fortified development near
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pretoria. everybody knows about gated communities. but their is called a security village. behind the high wall and the 220 volt wire that's strung up across the top. but on this side of the wall, in case you're an intruder thinking of coming inside is a place called the farm inn. it's a wild animal place, and you're apt to run into a cheetah or a lion if you're an intruder. >> oscar seemed without fear in the physical world. yet in his own home he seemed to have a great deal of fear. >> despite all. security in and around his property, oscar was still edgy. >> one day when i was with him, we came back to the house. and he said, by the way, there was a noise in the house last night. and i thought it was an intruder, and i came downstairs with my gun. >> another time oscar tweeted
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nothing like getting home to hear the washing machine on and thinking it's an intruder to go into full combat recon mode into the pantry. he told friends he kept his 9 millimeter pistol with him whenever possible. practiced often at firing ranges. and in the weeks leading uh to that fate full valentine's day oscar applied for licenses for six more guns. >> i saw a man who was coiled. a man who was never at rest, his body or his mind. he seemed to be on a hair trigger. >> now, here in court, oscar was the picture of remorse. and after his attorneys exposed all that police bungling, the magistrate's decision was not surprising, bail granted. and oscar is free pending trial. but has the state blown its case against its young hero? oh, no.
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not at all. coming up. danger. >> you get these whiffs of this darker side. >> and anger. >> he started screaming and going off at him. >> a different side of oscar pistorius emerges when dateline continues. you never know what messes you'll run into while dusting. of course there's dust. in addition to dust, you might find a little latte. ♪ and maybe something beastly. mixed in with the dust, you may even find some pixie sneezes. compared to a dry duster, a can of pledge picks up more dust and cleans 100% of messes. pledge multi surface. dusts better. cleans more. s.c. johnson. a family company.
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here's oscar pistorius, still fast, still leaving the paup rossi in the dust as he left his bail hearing. and immediately went into seclusion. his family released a statement that oscar continues to grieve and remains in deep mourning for the loss of his partner reeva. and the investigation continues. detectives are now powering over oscar's past, searching for patterns of jealousy, range, violence and talking to people who knew him, just as we did. >> so you get these whiffs of this darker side. >> it was quite compelling. >> the talk show host who knew him as a sweet and humble athlete said he was taken aback. >> i said what's it like rooming with him? he said it's terrible he's
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always shouting and yelling an at people on the phone. and i was surprised. he was always such a nice bloek. >> people use the word reckless about him. for example remember that speedboat incidence in 2009, the one that smashed up his face? he brought it up with mary ca rill low last june. >> i couldn't eat normal food and i was down about not being able to train. >> in fact, there were widespread whispers in south africa about what really happened that day on the water. liquor bottles were found. >> there is a suggestion that he or other people may have been inebriated. >> he denied it had anything to do with alcohol and after a brief investigation the matter was dropped. and just their year, oscar's actions may have put other people at risk. >> most recently in january, he handles a loaded gun at a table in an accident and accidentally shoots it.
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what is problematic for him is on the version of the witnesses, he then asks the friend to take the fall for him saying i'm a well-known person. the media will be all over this. this is what the state is arguing. everyone keeps making excuses for him and now a woman is dead. >> police have reportedly now gone back to that restaurant, taking evidence photos. and there are people in oscar's life who saw flashes of anger first hand. some involving women. in 2009, oscar was arrested for allegedly assaulting a young woman at his house. he allegedly slammed the door in her face. the case wasn't pursued. oscar said it was all a misunderstanding. >> it all turned completely sour. i had to spend the night in jail, which i never thought i'd have to do. >> one of the potential witnesses who may have to
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testify about oscar's behavior may well be exsoccer star mark bafrp lohr. >> sometimes it's too overplayed. >> he sat down exclusively with dateline and told us about a strange incident just after oscar returned from the olympics. >> he has so much energy. >> this is september 2012. oscar appeared on a tv show taped on location with his girlfriend of almost two years and no, that is not reeva. that's a woman named samantha taylor. >> she's really very caring and. >> you're both blushing. >> our faces are color of the drinks. >> what the public didn't know is that this apparently loving relationship was coming apart. and the sparks that break up caused blew up in mark bachelor's face. >> oscar was so controlling, so jealous. >> it happened a month after the reality tv episode aired in
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october 2012. when oscar found out that samantha had been asked out by a megarich producer named quentin vander berg. >> he started swearing at him and going off on him. >> what about? >> telling him that he was with his girlfriend or ex-girlfriend and he should have known about it and he's [ bleep ] my girlfriend while i'm running for my country. oscar threatened to break his legs and asked tough guy mark to have a word with oscar and demand an apology. when according to bachelor, oscar threatened to break his legs to. >> and you watch where you're going. and i know people. and i know this. >> samantha taylor later told a south african newspaper oscar is certainly not what people think he is. she said she was prepared to reveal what pistorius made me go
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through. well, then her laurie tracted her statement. and if prosecutors were looking for a pattern, oscar, women, and guns, there was their, which samantha's mother posted on facebook after reeva's death. >> i'm so grad that sammy is save and sound and out of the clutches of that man. there were a few occasions where things could have gone wrong with her and his gun during the time they dated. as for reeva, late that summer and fall, she had been seeing south african rugby heartthrob francois. she suddenly turned up with oscar. >> oscar's a very, very sexy boy. but he doesn't do it in an arrogant, obnoxious way. >> soon it seemed reeva and oscar were in love and very public about it. but the private oscar? according to police and some who have known him, before reeva, he displayed jealousy, occasionally
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range. and now they're trying to determine if reeva was in touch with francois or anyone else before she died as she certainly was with warren two days before valentine's day. though it was just a friendly chat, no intention to make him jealous. >> she'd want to remove herself completely from where she was. she'd want to leave. >> the police reported they found two cell phones in the bathroom near the place reeva was shot. will their contents reveal, as the prosecution believes that reeva was hiding from oscar, calling someone late at night for help? or that it was oscar who used the phones, desperate to save her. a crucial question. but as you'll hear, there's another question, a big one. and it doesn't bode well for oscar. coming up.
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if there's an intruder in the bathroom, and you think i've got to kill that guy. >> already that is an intent to kill. >> an intent to kill, even for a burglar? that might spelean more trouble for oscar. we'll explain when we come back.
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back home no port elizabeth in front of the world's prying eyes, reeva steenkamp's friends and family went and lay her to rest. >> there's only one thing missing -- it's reeva. >> there was a public memorial of sorts, too. a video tribute from her reality show, drop ca island. her family wanted her remembered at a vibrant young woman who made the world a better place. >> i think the way that you go out, not just your journey in life, but the way you go out and make your exit is so important. you even made an impact in a negative way or a positive way. >> oscar held his own memorial service for reeva here at an uncle's home several days after her death, just he and family. no cameras. he asked that his privacy be
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respected. oscar's living with an uncle now on the outskirts of pretoria. and that's where he was a couple days after his release when he and everybody else learned that his brother had been charged with culpbling homicide for causing the death of a woman in a traffic accident years ago. all this coming just six months after his triumph at the olympics. but is oscar finished for good? maybe not. after his lawyers challenged his bail restrictions he got his passport back. he can run for events. which is fine, innocent until guilty said the iaaf. oscar might compete in some events before his trial. but oscar's high security estate remains a potential crime scene and is still under investigation. and so is his past, his
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character. his whole life, really. >> the life he led, the way that he appeared to other people, the yins sprags that he brought to other people, that person doesn't exist any more. >> his lucrative endorsement deals are drying up. nike suspended his contract, so did a french designer. he'll probably never drive his brand new mcclairen. but there are far other losses, the trust, the belief people had in his goodness, his commitment. he was so determined, just before his meet oric rise. >> at least you don't look back and regret anything. >> many of his country men and fan remain loyal, still believing and hoping that it will somehow turn out all right. >> there's no way -- the oscar
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that i know, there's no way he can be a murderer. >> i looked at the photograph that was taken of him with his hands up in tears in court. i've seen him in that position before, except it was on the track. oscar looked up at the screen. he did exactly the same thing. he should not be weeping because he's fighting for his life. he should be weeping because he's frighting to the acclaim to millions. >> a judge will determine if he committed premeditated murder. but get ready for this. even if the judge decides oscar didn't intend to kill reeva, he could still be on the hook for murder as the prosecution spokesman told us. >> so if there's an intruder in the bathroom and you think i've got to kill that guy. >> already, that is an intent to kill. >> and you can spend 15 to 20
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years. >> 15 to life. >> even for a burglar. >> even for a burglar. any person. >> as the broken hero trembled in the prisoner's dock. it was the magistrate that presented the issues that can no longer be hidden or avoided. did something happen to spark jealousy, insecurity, an explosive temper? the answer will come in court, eventually, for reeva's parents, for everybody. >> oscar, reeva. >> what happened. >> and all i want, whether it will help him, come back with the honest truth. >> though no answer will bring back that remarkable woman he displayed like a trophy on his
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arm. >> she wasn't a positionf possession. she was reeva steenkamp. she was beautiful, she was a lawyer. she stood for so much, and so much more than oscar pistorius' girlfriend. that's all for now. i'm lester holt. thanks for joining us. this sunday a special edition of "meet the press." after the terror in boston, a violent manhunt, now the way forward and the broader question about securing america. [ cheers and applause ] the nightmare ends for the boston area, but the president says there is much more to learn. >> why did young men who grew up and studied here as part of our communities, resort to such
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violence? how did they plan and carry out these attacks? and did they receive any help? the families of those killed deserve answers. >> did the tsarnaev brothers have ties to foreign terror groups? how was their past to violence missed especially since the fbi tracked and interviewed the older brother two years ago? this morning the latest on the investigation and the way forward. joining us massachusetts governor deval patrick, nbc's justice correspondent pete williams, chairman of the house intelligence committee mike rogers of michigan, former homeland security secretary michael chertoff, former director of the national counterterrorism center michael l liter. then, how the marathon bombings changed things after such painful loss. >> anybody that knew her loved her. >> there were powerful signs of
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resilience. alongside a renewed sense of vulnerability as a manhunt virtually shut down a major american city. we hear from assistant senate majority leader dick durbin of illinois, and our special roundtable. and good sunday morning. what a week it has been. developments are still moving very quickly in the boston terror story. we want to go for the very latest this morning to the governor of massachusetts, deval patrick, who is with us this morning from boston. it's good to see you and congratulations on the end of a very difficult week. >> well, i accept your congratulations on behalf of the extraordinary team of law enforcement folks who have done this the right way, by building from facts up to a theory rather than from a theory out. >> governor, the "boston globe"
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says it all had had this morning for boston. edging toward not normal, but there is still a lot of concern. based on what you know, has the threat pass ed? >> i think we think so. there are a lot of leads that law enforcement is still pursuing, the fbi and the atf, the state police and local police as well. there are a lot of questions that all of us have and that law enforcement have yet to answer for us including questions direct directly to the suspect, but there isn't any basis for concern about another imminent threat. >> let me ask you some particulars about the surviving suspect, dzhokhar tsarnaev, who is now in the hospital. appare apparently he has a wound to the throat. did he try to commit suicide? >> i don't know the answer to that. >> do you know when doctors are saying he might actually be able to communicate? is there a real question about whether he'll be able to speak? >> i don't know those answers,
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david. i do know that he is in serious condition, but he's stable. and there are investigators prepared to interview him when he's able to be interviewed. >> the question about him coming onto the radar of the fbi two years ago, he was interviewed, he was tracked at the request of the russians, according to federal officials. that's questions now, for you and authorities in massachusetts, have to raise some concerns whether something was missed here. >> well, sure. there's a whole process here, and i think it was his brother, by the way, who was questioned by the fbi -- >> yes, forgive me, correct. >> a whole host of questions, david, that you have, that i have, more to the point that the fbi the a it tf and other law enforcement agencies will pursue. it's important for us to give them the space to do this


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